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Plum Island Beach

Newburyport’s Beach – Explore, Play, Relax!

 

Plum Island Beach is a beautiful New England barrier island offering locals and visitors an opportunity to explore, play and relax.  A family-friendly Newburyport attraction, Plum Island Beach offers many fun and interesting things to do. Discover amazing bird watching and the natural beauty of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge.  Enjoy fishing, boating, kayaking or just chill out on the beach and make sure to visit the cool Plum Island restaurants. Slideshow video created by Newburyport.com, utilizing pictures taken by local photographer/resident Donna Landry. Check out Donna’s Instagram page to view more of her beautiful photos (dlandry5) or watch her perform live with her band, The Boondock Sinners.

Plum Island is named for the beach plum shrubs that grow in the dunes and is 11 miles in length. There are three popular Plum Island Beach destinations on the island: The Refuge, Plum Island Center and The North Point. As you come across the bridge towards Plum Island, turn right on Sunset Drive to reach the Refuge entrance. If you’re heading to Plum Island Center continue straight a few blocks on Plum Island Boulevard.  As you pass through Plum Island Center, follow the road as it veers to the left. Continue a few miles on Northern Boulevard to the North Point parking lot. Each area of Plum Island Beach has a parking lot and offers either public rest rooms or portable restroom options.

The Refuge, (Parker River National Wildlife Refuge) runs through Newbury, Rowley and down to Ipswich spanning 4,700 acres including 3,000+ acres of salt marsh and provides habitat for over 300 species. On the far Southern Point of the Island you will find Sandy Point State Reservation, a very picturesque Plum Island Beach located across from Cranes Beach in Ipswich, MA. The Hellcat Interpretive Trail is another very popular destination also located on the Refuge. Make sure to check the Refuge website or facebook page before planning your trip as the Refuge closes at certain points for the protection of Piping Plover breeding and nesting. The Refuge offers beach access from the following Refuge parking lots: 1, 2, 3, 6, and 7. Public restrooms are located at lot 1, lot 4 and the Refuge maintenance area and all restrooms are wheelchair accessible. Other Refuge lots offer portable restroom options.

Plum Island Center is located in Newbury and is the best choice if your priorities include being near restaurants, ice cream and convenience stores. There are a few parking lots just across the street from the the main beach entrance and portable restrooms are located on the edge of the beach.

The North Point of the Island is located in Newburyport and is where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Merrimack River at the mouth of the Newburyport Harbor. This part of Plum Island Beach offers beautiful views but swimmers are warned to stay close to the shore and not to swim out to the sandbar as the tides are known to change rapidly causing dangerous conditions. The Plum Island Light House is a picturesque historic landmark located at the Northern end of the Island, across the street from the North Point parking lot and public restrooms. If you have kids they are certain to spot the cool playground on the edge of  the beach next to the parking lot.  Captains Fishing Parties is a another popular destination located directly on the beach offering both public and private boat trips.

Although Plum Island is a popular vacation destination, the majority of residents live on the Island year round. If you’re looking to purchase a home on Plum Island you will find a very broad range of homes and price points.

Directions from Boston

Take I-95 North to Exit 86, Rt. 113 East. As you drive through Newburyport, MA Rt. 113 will become Main Street and then will turn back into Rt. 113 as you leave Newburyport and pass into Newbury.  You will pass the Newbury Town Green on  your right and take a left at the traffic light on to Rolfe’s Lane.  At the end of Rolfe’s Lane you will take a right on to Newburyport Turnpike and follow it over to the beach.  You will pass the Newburyport Airport on your right and Bob Lobster on the left.

If you want to go to the Parker River National Wildlife Reservation Beach, take a right at the Plum Island Grille, on to Sunset Drive.  Keep straight if you want to head to the main public beach.

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